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Essay: Understanding Organisation and the Role of Human Resources (Homegrown Hotels)

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  • Understanding Organisation and the Role of Human Resources (Homegrown Hotels)
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Understand the purpose of an organisation and its operating environment

1.1 Describe the purpose and goals of an organisation

Homegrown Hotels Ltd (The PIG Hotels) describe themselves as “Restaurant with Rooms, where everything is driven by the gardener, forager and chef from the Kitchen Garden, offering exceptional food and service in a relaxed and comfortable environment.” It is a Privately-owned Limited company whose stakeholders are primarily Robin Hutson (Hotelier & former owner of Hotel du Vin Group), David Elton (Marketing) and Jim Ratcliffe (founder of chemicals company INEOS).
The Vision of the group is to deliver “an outstanding experience for every guest; a ‘wow’ moment that surprises and delights for a price that won’t break the bank; sensibly priced accommodation and food served in an intelligent way without too many rules.”(

In 2011 the first PIG was opened, there are now five, with another three opening in the next 12 months, there are approximately 400 staff distributed throughout the Hotels and Head Office.

The Mission is simple, “We are committed to doing the little things brilliantly. Boutique hoteliers with decades of experience behind us and an obsessive commitment to what we believe in. Home-grown in every way, hands on and passionate about being different within our space and for all aspects of the craft of hospitality.” (November 2018

Many guests will visit all of THE PIG Hotels, so although each hotel has its own personality, they have the same values and goals, which has led to the success of the brand, as a go to boutique hotel/restaurant in the South of England, which was the objective of the owners when the first hotel was opened.

1.2 Describe the products, services and customers of an organisation:

Homegrown Hotels offer exceptional products and services to their guests, ensuring that all who visit have a truly personal and outstanding experience. The hotels offer quality products, such as the locally sourced seasonal food and carefully selected wines all to be enjoyed in a relaxing environment. There are also treatments that use some of the best products found in the UK.

The outstanding service of the staff is renowned, it is warm, friendly and engaging, they go above and beyond to make sure that all guests visits are enjoyable and that their expectations, as well as the management expectations, are met. Staff have a pivotal role to play in ensuring that the hotel runs smoothly and efficiently.

Although the market for the hotels are mainly Business to Consumer, as the main aim of the hotel is to offer its products and services to the guests who are staying or eating with them, there is a certain amount of Business to Business e.g. Head Chef buying food to prepare for the restaurant from local businesses, housekeeping team ordering linen for the rooms and when a new hotel is opening all the businesses that are used for building and refurbishing.

The Hotels have a wide-ranging customer base; however, all have one thing in common that they enjoy exceptional good food, appreciate being in relaxed, comfortable environments and are able to afford the range of products and services that the hotel offers. The location of the hotels means that the majority of guests will be from the South of England however they are willing to travel to go to each of THE PIG Hotels. Because of the reputation that the hotels have achieved since they have opened, all visitors have very high expectations and will most certainly make a complaint if these expectations are not met.

1.3 Analyse how external factors impact on the business activities of an organization

There are many external factors which can affect the business activities of the hotel such as:


The business relies quite heavily on people from the EU to work in the hotels, however, under the current Brexit proposals many of these EU Nationals would not be able to remain in the UK to work as the Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) will potentially restrict businesses recruiting migrants from the EU in future.

Jamie Grierson reported in the Guardian on 20th September 2018 that “in the MAC’s report on EU migration after Brexit, the committee recommended lifting the cap on highly skilled workers applying to take up jobs in the UK but also backed maintaining the salary threshold of £30,000.

Comparing this criteria to data from the labour force survey, the IPPR (Institute for Public Policy Research), estimates that around 75% of the UK’s current EU workforce would not be eligible were they subject to the proposals.”

Marley Morris, IPPR’s senior research fellow, said: “The new proposals from the migration advisory committee would have a dramatic impact on the UK’s labour force and on employers. Our analysis suggests that a large majority of migrants from the EU employed in the UK would not meet the criteria proposed by the MAC.”

If this proposal goes ahead, the hotels could potentially become short staffed, especially if they can’t find replacements locally, which is quite likely, as the reason so many EU nationals are employed is that they can’t find people in the vicinity who want to work in the hospitality industry. This could have significant impact on the services the hotel provides to the guests, which could result in losing revenue.


If there is a recession in the UK, this will have a huge impact on the Hospitality industry as a whole, as people will not have the money to spend on entertainment and luxury goods, they will be thinking more of their basic spending needs like food, mortgage, bills etc. If people can not afford to go out to eat or stay in a hotel, the amount of revenue could significantly drop which could result in job losses and could culminate in the hotel closing.


The PIG hotels are seen by many as a ‘go to’ destination for a night or weekend away, as they “created a country house hotel for the modern day with accessible rates that disrupted this quintessentially British tradition and broadened its demographic.” Sophie Lam (The independent 2017)

They have won many Awards and rave reviews, the hotels are seen as trendy destinations to stay or eat. However, since opening the first PIG many other hotels have followed in their footsteps and created similar establishments, with the same premise of good food with a relaxed and comfortable vibe, therefore the competition has increased, which has an impact on footfall, the hotel must be able to keep fresh and enticing for customers.


New technology was introduced to help with the Health and Safety training of all new staff. This new online training platform is quicker and easier to use that the previous manual training, thereby enabling Managers to be able to spend more time training new starters in their roles, so they become competent quickly, which has a positive impact on the guests and other staff members. 2018

2. Understand the structure, culture and functions of an organisation

2.1 Describe the Structure of an Organisation and functions within it.

The organisational chart for HomeGrown Hotels is as below:

This structure is known as tall hierarchy structure as there are many levels of hierarchy. A tall hierarchy structure is where there is middle management between the Directors of the company and the employees (staff). The Directors will make the decisions and have over all control of what happens within the company, not the employees, as they will not be seen to have the experience to make crucial decisions. However, the individual Hotel Directors and Heads of Departments will be able to make day-to day decisions that affect their hotel or department. The staff will be well trained by their managers and there are opportunities for promotion throughout the whole group. There are several means of communication, there is a company intranet site, which gives news, policies, procedures and training programs; all staff have access to this as soon as they start.

However, some communication is directly to the staff through email or will be passed on through verbal communication via their direct manager.

Main departments in Head office are:

Finance: The Finance team are crucial to the smooth running of the organisation as they are responsible for managing the finances of the business, this includes payroll, invoicing, credit control, managing cash flow, monitoring business spending and preparing weekly, monthly and yearly financial reports for the Board of Directors

Human Resources: The Human Resource team help develop and manage the company’s culture, they are experts in dealing with issues that might arise with staff. They are there to help & advise with recruitment, inductions, benefits, payroll, mediate conflict and help with training and development of the staff.

Marketing: The marketing department is integral to the success of the business by promoting the hotel through its website, social media and press releases. They work closely with the sales teams and the Hotels Directors to endorse the hotels to new and existing guests, continually coming up with fresh and enticing campaigns.

Central Reservation (Sales): The Central Reservation team is at the forefront of the sales for the hotels. They are based at Head Office and will help all enquiries, whether it be by phone or online, with regards to booking rooms or tables in the restaurants. They successfully manage and keep track of the bookings and reservations made by customers, also driving further sales and ensuring that any special requirements that the guests have are noted down on their bookings.

2.2 Explain how the different functions work together to optimize performance.

All departments will have very clear and concise roles to play within the company, however they will all have to work together for the business to be financial secure, successful and viable.

All four departments are crucial to the success of the hotel, they have to communicate and collaborate effectively to ensure staff retention, as high staff turnover affects finances and operations. HR must ensure that they are recruiting the right people from the inset and decide on the right path of training, accounts must make sure that the business can afford a new person and make sure that they are paid on time and can justify any additional training costs that might be incurred. Without a marketing department promoting and driving sales, fewer customers will visit the hotels, meaning less staff will be needed and the company’s finances will decrease. If the marketing team has come up with a new advertising campaign for the hotels, this will have direct impact on the Central Reservation team, as it should cause an influx of enquires about staying or eating at the hotels, however, they can then increase sales further by offering other services or products to the guests thereby increasing revenue, again impacting on staffing levels.

2.3 Explain the culture of an organisation affects its operations.

“It has a pubby feel – which was intentional – and hence has broken down the stuffy country house image,” Hutson told The Caterer. (

This is the culture that the CEO envisaged when he opened THE PIG. It is all about the informal and friendly service and the laidback, cosy interiors. The staff are sincere and approachable in their behaviour, they share a belief that they are there to serve the guests so that all expectations are met; people are recruited because of their personality and what they can bring to the hotel. The group is people orientated, with happy staff that are well trained and contented guests. The staff are the heart and soul of the hotels, it is imperative that they are looked after to ensure loyalty and to keep staff turnover to a minimum. The management set incredibly high standards for staff, it is detail orientated, as all departments have very clear and concise procedures that they have to follow, whether it be how the rooms should be cleaned before a guest arrives or the standard of the food served in the restaurant. The details, however small, make the hotels stand out from many of their competitors and this leads to repeat business and a good reputation. Hotels are Outcome Orientated, because if guests leave feeling unhappy the outcome is not what should have happened, therefore, all roles are defined by ensuring that guests leave satisfied, if they do the staff will know that they have been doing their job properly, if mistakes are made it can be costly.

There is a rational and logical structure within the organisation and all employees have clearly defined roles with formal policies and procedures in place. This type of culture according to Charlies Handy (1999) would be a Role Culture.

3.1 Describer how HR or L&D activities support an organisation’s strategy.

Resourcing and Talent Planning

Resourcing and talent planning is imperative to the organisation and HR in achieving the company’s strategy, being able to identify and attract the right people with the right experience, helping the company to achieve its goals and objectives of being an outstanding hotel in a very competitive market. Homegrown hotels are renowned for their warm and friendly staff who deliver exceptional service, therefore the HR team need to make sure that from the start of the recruitment process that people with precise skills and personality are being attracted. The HR team must communicate with managers to find out exacting requirements for vacancies and ensure that there is no discrimination during the recruitment process. All staff are given a HR led comprehensive First Day Company Induction, highlighting the goals and obdurate objectives of the hotel. For the company to improve efficiency and increase profit, it is vital that staff turnover is not high.

Performance and Reward:

It is very important HR help the hotels to improve overall performance, maintain standards, deliver rewards and identify staff capabilities. The performance of staff should be monitored closely so that if staff are under performing, HR can investigate why, and what improvements need to be made to encourage staff to perform to a higher standard. If staff are performing well, a reward system should be in place, whether that be from further training, promotion or monetary rewards. HR will need to carefully put a reward system in place which will be fair to the staff and cost-effective for the company.

Employee Engagement:

All employees should feel engaged whilst they are at work, therefore it is the job of HR to make sure that there is a true and positive connection between the staff and the company, this will enable people to feel more satisfied and involved whilst at work, which will help with productivity and contribute to positive experience for the guests staying at the Hotels. HR are there to help find and inspire senior team members, who will lead their staff by example. If staff feel inspired, then they will be engaged in their job, which will have an impact on the success of the hotel, as happy staff leads to happy guests.

3.2 Explain the role of HR or L&D professionals in supporting line managers and their staff.

Employee Relations:

HR would provide support to Line Managers with regards to Conflict Management, as HR can give specialist advise and information to the Line Manager who is trying to resolve the conflict, however, HR can take the lead on investigating and trying to resolve the conflict, which might benefit the staff, as HR will be totally impartial and know the correct procedures that have to be followed. Any staff who have issues with their senior team members can go to HR for advice, who can then investigate the claims.

Learning and Development:

HR can provide support to Line Managers with regards to helping them to encourage and develop team members with their career progression in accordance with the organisation learning and development strategy. This might be through finding the right training course for them to gain career progression. All staff have the benefit of being able to approach HR with regards to Learning and Development and HR can find alternative careers within the company that might be suitable. HR can help coach the staff careers, also encouraging and supporting line managers to give their staff career and development plans, which benefits both parties long term.

Performance and Reward:

HR can train line managers to communicate correctly to their teams in respect to the relationship between the company, the staff performance and the rewards awarded. If individually the staff are performing well within their roles and the team, making the team more efficient, which is beneficial for the Line Manager, this will have an impact of the performance of the company as a whole. If the company is doing well, then rewards will be available, whether this be a pay rise, bonus or some other reward. For the staff, if the Line Manager knows how to encourage their team to perform to the best of their ability, they will be rewarded accordingly.

CIPD Professional Map 2013
Human Resources Practice 7th Edition 2016 Malcolm Martin & Fiona Whiting


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